Publication - FOI/EIR release

Ferry link to the Northern Isle bidders: FOI release

Published: 2 Dec 2019

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.

Published:
2 Dec 2019
Ferry link to the Northern Isle bidders: FOI release
FOI reference: FOI/19/02513
Date received: 29 Oct 2019
Date responded: 26 Nov 2019
Information requested

“the Scottish Government has awarded a lengthy contract to run this vital ferry link to the Northern Isles to SERCO. As I understand it this company has failed on many previous occasions to deliver good service . Was there not another company tendering which might offer a better service ?”

Response

Please find our response to your request in the attached Annex.

Serco Ltd were announced as the preferred bidder on 20 September 2019 following a fair, open and transparent tendering exercise. Given the essential lifeline nature of these services, the tender was structured to attract the Most Economically Advantageous Tender based on a combination of price (65%) and quality (35%). The only other bidder was CalMac Ferries Ltd.

The new Northern Isles contract will deliver real benefits for Northern Isles communities whilst providing a commitment to the Scottish Government’s Fair Work Policy, which was a condition of the tender. Evaluation of this criteria formed part of the decision making on awarding the contract to Serco.

Until the contract is awarded and signed, I am constrained in respect of what I can say regarding details of the respective bids. However, once the new contract is awarded, Transport Scotland will publish a non-sensitive version of the contract on its website.

In response to your constituents remarks regarding sourcing a provider that can provide a “better service”, I would highlight that in 2019 the existing operator has suffered no technical disruption to services, and therefore has an excellent track record for reliability, and has a customer satisfaction rating of 97%. Local stakeholders, including both Islands Councils served by the contract, have welcomed the selection of the preferred bidder.

About FOI
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Contact

Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Email: ceu@gov.scot
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road
Edinburgh
EH1 3DG